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1. Introduction

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Chapter Summary

The understanding of 2Kgs 17 as dealing with the Samaritans has its earliest attestation in the works of Josephus. He offers a story where he describes them as "Chouthaioi," a group which was brought by the Assyrian king Salmanasser from "Chouthas" in Persia into Samaria after the occupation and subsequent depopulation of that area, Ant. 9.278 f., 288-291. The version presented by Josephus in Ant. 9, for example, carries strong similarities to 2Kgs 17. It therefore either depends on the reliability of that story as regards the origin of the Samaritans, or-if it used 2Kgs 17 as a literary model only-it must be trusted on its own merit. The Samaritans owe their fame in the Christian world to the New Testament (NT). The NT is another ancient source with information on them, and the scholar might turn in this direction to find help.

Keywords: 2Kgs 17; Samaritans



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